TODAY IN OUR LAB: Listeria newyorkensis

Listeria newyorkensis

Listeria newyorkensis is a species of bacteria that was first discovered in a seafood processing plant in New York and was first published in 2015. It is a Gram-positive, facultatively anaerobic, non-motile, non-spore-forming bacillus. Listeria newyorkensis is non-pathogenic and non-hemolytic. It can be differentiated from other species of the genus Listeria by the absence of the α-mannosidase reaction, inability to acidify D-arabitol, and ability to acidify D-ribose, D-galactose, and L-arabinose.

In a surveillance study conducted in Japan between 2007 and 2013, a strain of Listeria newyorkensis was isolated from river water. Furthermore, L. newyorkensis has been identified in both North America and Europe, suggesting that its occurrence may be broad, at least in the northern hemisphere.

Listeria bacteria, including Listeria newyorkensis, can be found in water and soil. Infected animals may carry the bacteria, spread it, and contaminate foods, making it a potential source of infection for humans.

Listeriosis is an infection caused by the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes, and people become infected by eating foods contaminated with the bacteria. Although Listeria newyorkensis is non-pathogenic, it is important to be aware of the potential risks associated with Listeria species, particularly for vulnerable populations such as pregnant women, the elderly, and individuals with weakened immune systems.

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